Squizzers

I’m not a fan of the furry little rats, but everywhere I go there they are, either watching me from a tree, trying to take food off me or trying to trip me up.

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But I think there’s probably a reason for our odd relationship. It goes back over twenty years.

Twenty years ago, Charles and Eddie was no 1 (Would I lie to you?), John Major was Prime Minister and the country was in recession. It was announced that one third of the country’s deep coal mines were to be closed. Most big high street retailers like WH Smith withdrew vinyl from stock due to the huge increase in sales of CDs and cassettes.

In other words, dark days.

I was a student at Manchester Uni, not studying my course as much as going out and having fun and drinking booze as often as possible. In October ’92 I had just started my third year (yes, I’m that old) when chance (or something else) bumped me into a man who today is my husband and the father of my wonderful children. This post is a belated way to celebrate our 20 years together – ups and downs.

Luckily for all of you, these were not the days of the smart or camera phone so I will not share photographs of us at this time. But I don’t like a post without any photographs.

The name of the post is the name of the place where we met all those years ago.
You’ll notice that it’s not the world famous Hacienda.
You’ll wonder if it was THE happening bar of the moment.
The club to be seen at.

No, it was none of these, not even by far (you possibly guessed as much, going on the name). Squizzers – proper name Squirrels – was the bar at Oak House, our 1st year halls of residence, which we still sometimes frequented of a Saturday night when we wanted to hear REM (Shiny Happy People) and James (Sit Down) again and pay a pound to buy a pint of lager. They had a big dance floor and we spent many nights jigging around in there, Saturday of course being the pinnacle of the week.

My other half to be was not in the same year as us and had ended up there due to being on the town with his football team and unable to get in anywhere else. Squirrels’ standards were this high. He had never been there before and can’t remember if he went there again.

We gravitated towards each other as two people do up north when they are both from South East London and both heavily into records. It radiates off you (or was it something to do with the Breaker lager or the K cider?). My dear friend Katie also takes credit for introducing us. I wonder how, or precisely what, she knew.

And that was the beginning of just over 20 years ago.

I’m sure it’s why I still find myself drawn to squirrels in the park, despite not really liking the creatures.
It’s almost definitely the reason why our son (Manny Dolittle) is so good at hypnotising them.

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Did anyone else ever go to Squirrels in Fallowfield? Anyone know if it’s still going? Please do drop me a comment of your memories so that we can reminisce together. In the meantime, thank you Squirrels for my most beloved family – and sending out special Squizzers hugs to my main cohorts Katie, Lucy, Bev, and Jess.

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16 thoughts on “Squizzers

  1. Just the best memories ever. As soon as I saw the title of your post the memories flooded back. Definitely not the coolest but very memorable. Here’s to 20 years xxxx

  2. Oh sit down, oh sit down, sit down next to me…. takes me back…and I’ll be singing it all day now. Great post Hatty, and lovely photos. I have never been to your club, but I was once walking down Handen Road (been to clinic with Son, approx 6 months) and a squirrel fell from a tree and landed on his boot-sale buggy. The world stopped for a minute, I starred at the squirrel and it starred at me. Son looked in amazement. Then the squirrel ran off. Every time I pass that tree I tell the same story and friends and family recite it line for line, but I still always tell it anyway.

    1. It wasn’t my favourite song but certainly of its time! I love your squirrel story. Guess we all have one. Maybe it’s just a thing about small boys and squirrels. Do you mean SE12? I used to live in Southbrook Rd…

      1. Yes SE12, our doctors’ was on Handen. Don’t suppose you ever went there? Dr. Bentham was the nicest man in the world – he had 9 children and used to drive around in a converted ambulance.

  3. Oh hat, I don’t have many memories of evenings out, but I vividly remember you two meeting. Not sure what I knew but 20 years on it must have been something special! Very fond fun memories. I enjoyed reading that almost as much as I used to enjoy you reading your diary to us, or maybe excerps of your diary?! Xxx

  4. Ha ha, but Katie I don’t remember reading my diary aloud to you – did you steal it to entertain the others with? So our meeting is all thanks to you… I’m not always sure that ‘thanks’ is the word! xx

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